HRMS Gamification: Rolling the Dice on Talent Management

Games have been used to manage, motivate and develop the workforce for decades. After all, what are loyalty programs, target-based bonuses and employee-of-the-month schemes if not games? What we’re now referring to as HRMS gamification is simply the digitalization of these tactics. It’s only new in the sense of being applied via technology (and of course, new in the breadth of options that the technology gives us).

When it comes to HRMS talent management, gamification is one of the year’s buzzwords.

Game-like systems can boost retention rates by engaging performers with corporate values and culture. Desirable behaviors such as collaboration and innovation can be rewarded and encouraged through public acknowledgement (making your top talent role models for the rest of the workforce) and the whole thing can feed into your performance management and appraisal system. What’s more, if you’ve been using ‘gamified’ recruitment practices to attract your high performers in the first place, they’ll be reasonably expecting to continue to encounter HRMS gamification once they’re hired.

Crest of the Wave

However…, as with the crest of any wave, it’s easy to get carried away and end up indulging in gamification simply because that’s what everyone else is doing. If you really want it to transform your HRMS talent management processes, you need to clearly understand what it is you’re trying to achieve with it. When it comes to talent, this is often simply a matter of being clear on your definition of “talent”; or more specifically, “top talent”. Just as in the recruitment process, when you need to clearly articulate the characteristics and qualities of your ideal candidate for the position, you need to define the qualities, skills, knowledge and attitudes of the people your business needs to carry it forward. The content of this ‘talent profile’ or – much more likely – profiles, should inform the design of HRMS gamification otherwise the whole process becomes rather hit and miss.

Not only is HRMS gamification an increasingly popular tactic for recruiting the best Millennial talent, it may well be key to retaining them.

When it comes to selecting your provider for a gamified HRMS talent management solution, there are a few factors to bear in mind. First, the clarity on your own needs mentioned above. Second, don’t forget that with cheap cloud infrastructure and platform services, the cost of entry for new vendors and their SaaS-based products is lower than ever. This means it’s relatively easy and quick for new products to come to market and as a discerning customer you’ll want to be very sure that a vendor is focused on the needs or your business and has plenty of case studies to back that up. Finally, building on the second point, check they’re really in the business of talent management and not just hawking a dressed-up learning management system.

Times are changing (aren’t they always) and it would appear that not only is HRMS gamification an increasingly popular tactic for recruiting the best Millennial talent, it may well be key to retaining them and ensuring they deliver on their full potential for your business.

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Dave Foxall

About the author…

Dave has worked as HR Manager for the Ministry of Justice for a number of years, he now writes on a broad range of topics including jazz music, and, of course, the HRMS software market.

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Dave Foxall